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US Intelligence Wants Tools To Tell: Who's the Smartest of Them All?

samzenpus posted about 4 months ago | from the finding-big-brains dept.

Government 162

coondoggie writes Can a tool or technology be applied to the brain and accurately predict out of a given group of people who will be the smartest? The research arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) is looking for exactly those kinds of tools."IARPA is looking to get a handle on the state of the art in brain-based predictors of future cognitive performance. In particular, IARPA is interested in non-invasive analyses of brain structure and/or function that can be used to predict who will best learn complex skills and accomplish tasks within real-world environments, and with outcome measures, that are relevant to national security.

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not again! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620041)

They want the smartest and fastest and strongest - where are you Jason Bourne?

Re: not again! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620105)

I'm right here. What do you need?

Re: not again! (1)

fractoid (1076465) | about 4 months ago | (#47620147)

"You don't find him. He finds you."

Re: not again! (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#47620261)

What I find amazing is that a bunch of idiots, by their own admission, are looking for a smarter person? What movie, and game idea!

Re: not again! (0)

MobSwatter (2884921) | about 4 months ago | (#47620339)

They don't need to be smarter, they just need to stop f*cking up and come to the realization that wiping their A$$ with the constitution erodes the foundation the US was built upon. Lots changed when they croaked Kennedy, been a downhill run for a while now.

Re: not again! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620901)

I killed Kennedy. I am the dominant lifeform. I rule u all and Im very viscious as u can proably tell. Here I come.

Re: not again! (1)

Camael (1048726) | about 4 months ago | (#47620585)

They gotta narrow down the choices of who to inject the super soldier serum into, ya know. Save the taxpayer's money.

They ain't gonna find him on Capitol Hill, that's for sure.

Re: not again! (1)

MobSwatter (2884921) | about 4 months ago | (#47620679)

Smart ones? I think either those that are smart or have any foresight are the ones building an exit strategy to live in a country that has half a chance at democracy. But those would likely be off the list of being hired so looks like such a fishing expedition will likely be fruitless for them, but hey it's just another stab at tax payer money. Other side of the coin would be the smart ones might be dangerous, but only half as dangerous and the honest and smart ones.

Re: not again! (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 4 months ago | (#47620499)

make a list of everyone you know.

now we have a list of people smarter than you.

... and yet ... (1)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 4 months ago | (#47620747)

They want the smartest and fastest and strongest ...

They should look at that guy in the White House, the epitome of "smart", "fast" and "strong"

First Post. (1)

silentphate (1245152) | about 4 months ago | (#47620045)

I wouldn't mind being a test subject if they if they did have a tool.

Re:First Post. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620189)

they can test my tool with a subject

Re:First Post. (1)

pitchpipe (708843) | about 4 months ago | (#47620483)

I wouldn't mind being a test subject if they if they did have a tool.

They don't take stutterers.

JK. One of the smartest persons I know stuttered.

Re:First Post. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620559)

What are they gonna do once they have the smartest people? huh? Think about that :S

In other words... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620057)

...the ultimate gentleman spy.

Yeah, baby!

Re:In other words... (1)

davester666 (731373) | about 4 months ago | (#47620503)

seriously, the only way to get a definitive answer to the question "who is the smartest person in the room" is to be the one person to bring in a machine gun.

Re:In other words... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620567)

They're attempting to save resources by identifying the smartest person BEFORE bringing out the machine guns.

No one from this site (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620059)

That's a fact.

Dumb question (3, Interesting)

Krishnoid (984597) | about 4 months ago | (#47620079)

What's 'national security'? I mean, is there a rigorous definition of it?

Dumb question (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620137)

National security is worrying about terrorists in countries 7000 miles away across the ocean but leaving the southern gate wide open.

Re:Dumb question (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 months ago | (#47620223)

What's 'national security'? I mean, is there a rigorous definition of it?

Of course there is!

Telling you what it is would be gravely harmful to a variety of force protection, vital infrastructure, and national security interests that are too sensitive to actually describe, so the definition, the OLC memos interpreting the application of the definition, the existence/nonexistence and/or contents of the signing statement outlining the executive branch interpretation of the definition, any DoD, Intelligence Community, or Law Enforcement operational policies from which the definition or aspects thereof might be inferred by any hostile state or nonstate entity, as well as additional aspects are classified.

And yes, we do claim that all of that is exempt for the purposes of 5 USC 552(b), for reasons which are also classified, so don't even try that.

Closest approximation I can think of: (4, Insightful)

marxmarv (30295) | about 4 months ago | (#47620369)

"the protection and preservation of existing power inequalities"

Re:Dumb question (2)

gweihir (88907) | about 4 months ago | (#47620613)

Simple: It means "We are much more powerful and much less moral than you, so you better shut up NOW!"

Re:Dumb question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620651)

>What's 'national security'? I mean, is there a rigorous definition of it?

Elites are fearful of revolt from below:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kmUS--QCYY

Re:Dumb question (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 4 months ago | (#47620971)

What's 'national security'? I mean, is there a rigorous definition of it?

When you listen to public officials talk, they never talk about defending our lives or our freedoms, but always about defending our "national interests".

And of course, that means whatever policymakers and their pwners want it to mean. If they think bombing some peasants halfway around the world will help keep toilet paper affordable, it's a national security issue.

It's called a "test" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620103)

You teach people stuff and then you see how well they retained it and how well they can apply it.

Of course you'll have to define what "smartest" means to use any such results and to set the questions. That's the real challenge. Otherwise a beautician might be considered smartest. Usually we use math, pattern recognition and logic questions. Would be interesting to see how you could significantly improve over that with brain scans. Isn't Einstein's brain preserved somewhere? Ahhh yes here we go....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albert_Einstein%27s_brain

Re:It's called a "test" (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 months ago | (#47620239)

I think that IARPA wants a cool science machine (ideally one that makes impressive pictures, like an fMRI) that will predict who the smart people are without the trouble and time of teaching them something and testing them on it.

Re:It's called a "test" (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#47620275)

So we can expect the following conversation, "uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu pretty pictures." From the folks that are looking for smart people? What could possibly go wrong?

Re:It's called a "test" (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 months ago | (#47620337)

Absolutely nothing. It's a matter of scientific fact that our top minds are on the problem.

"Smart", as GCHQ would have it, (1)

marxmarv (30295) | about 4 months ago | (#47620383)

means "compliant" and "loyal". Of course, "smart" in any context is nothing more than a measure of conformity to a particular culture's belief structure. Even here.

Re:"Smart", as GCHQ would have it, (1)

Jason Goatcher (3498937) | about 4 months ago | (#47620459)

Yeah, some smarts won't be acceptable. The advice "Stop getting involved in so many fucking wars," could probably improve our national security a great deal if followed, but probably wouldn't be seen as "smart."

Re:It's called a "test" (2)

Jason Goatcher (3498937) | about 4 months ago | (#47620447)

Einstein had trouble with basic math as a child. His teachers thought he was an idiot. You have to wonder how many "smartest" never happened because they got beat up on the schoolyard and gave up on their dreams.

You mean... (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620561)

committed suicide realizing the futility of modern existance. Or: switched off their brains either through force of will or substance abuse in order to better conform to society's expectations and be able to hold that crappy 9-5 they needed to actually eat.

While I'm sure there are plenty who succeed, if you're not a big arrogant or sociopathic it doesn't seem likely you'll make it far in this world. Well, unless you've got a sociopath 'managing' you.

Re:It's called a "test" (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 4 months ago | (#47620979)

Einstein had trouble with basic math as a child. His teachers thought he was an idiot. You have to wonder how many "smartest" never happened because they got beat up on the schoolyard and gave up on their dreams.

I thought getting beat up on the schoolyard is what makes them pursue their dreams.

Re:It's called a "test" (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621277)

Einstein had trouble with basic math as a child.

That's sort of an urban myth. He did have a lot of problems with the math particularly for General Relativity compared to good mathematicians (like his friend Marcel Grossmann). David Hilbert actually published a complete GR framework shortly after conversing with Einstein about his ongoing work, then retracted the publication. Because the important achievement was not going through with the math, but rather knowing which postulates and invariants the math needed to fit.

It is popular to cite Einstein's admissions of struggling with math, but those citations are usually way misinterpreted. We are definitely not talking about being stumped with physics grad student level math but rather being challenged by worming himself into math genius level abstract math.

This is terrifying (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620109)

and I don't even know why

Re:This is terrifying (1)

Grow Old Timber (1071718) | about 4 months ago | (#47620151)

Here is why it's so terrifying; How's it going so far? Snowden for example.... I mean careful who you train they might bite you in the ass. Shawshank Redemption comes to mind, haha. Government Intel is an oxymoron

What makes them think this is even possible? (3, Insightful)

Wycliffe (116160) | about 4 months ago | (#47620121)

Obviously intelligence varies from person to person and we have tests like IQ tests that can measure this
but IQ tests are not super good at measuring people who are successful at accomplishing tasks because
it takes more than raw intelligence. Things like willpower, dedication, creativity, work ethic, etc... all play
into whether someone is successful at accomplishing tasks. I don't see how a brain scanner is going to
accomplish this or how it would be any better than existing testing methods. If I wanted to know this I
would be more inclined to give a group of people a ton of different types of tests and then watch their
career and decide which of the tests more closely correlated with what I was seeking then I could narrow
it down to a combination of traits for instance maybe the results would be high IQ, high creativity, and
high level of willpower or some other combination of 3 or 4 attributes then you could test for only those
3-4 attributes instead of dozen of attributes. If you didn't want to wait, you could instead give the same
battery of tests to the people in your company that you considered most successful and see if there are
any patterns.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

fractoid (1076465) | about 4 months ago | (#47620155)

It's more a matter of there's nothing to make them certain that it *won't* work. Having something like this would be a significant tactical advantage, so it's worth a shot.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#47620289)

So an idiot gives a gun to a "non" idiot, really?

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

easyTree (1042254) | about 4 months ago | (#47620589)

Gives, in a sense.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

Grow Old Timber (1071718) | about 4 months ago | (#47620161)

resourceful is one trait you missed.that might be handy to have. That's hard to teach.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

Wycliffe (116160) | about 4 months ago | (#47620403)

There are dozens of attributes that I missed and many overlap (like resourcefulness and certain types of intelligence).
I wasn't trying to be all inclusive. I think you could probably come up with 50 or more tests of random traits and attributes.
Many like if you tested for eye color or hair color probably won't have any correlation at all. The point is to have enough
tests that then you can look at the good candidates and see where they all clump then you could eliminate all the useless
tests and only keep the half dozen tests that were shown to be good at predicting. Even if you wanted to do a brain scan
to eliminate the need for a dozen different tests, knowing which attributes were most important might help you narrow down
the regions of the brain to focus on. Fear for instance is know to be associated with a certain area of the brain so if
fearlessness was found to be an important trait then you could possibly focus on that area of the brain.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 4 months ago | (#47620243)

âoeSuch a predictive capability would allow organizations to determine in advance who is most likely to be able to learn and master complex skills and accomplish tasks in real-world environments that are important for the organizationâ(TM)s mission and success, thereby increasing return on investment for training activities and optimizing matching of personnel to tasks/environments.

This sounds a lot like Gattaca, but with brain scans instead of genetic scans.

I think it is the opposite. (2)

khasim (1285) | about 4 months ago | (#47620277)

Too often I see stupid mistakes (that are known mistakes) implemented because someone higher in the hierarchy or with more social clout pushed for it.

We don't follow the "best" idea. We don't follow the "smartest" people.

We do stupid things over and over and over because we are still social animals.

Even if they could find the 10 smartest people in the nation, they would still tell them to implement the same, stupid "solutions". And if those 10 people argued against the stupidity ... well then ... the test must be flawed. Those could not be the smartest.

Now find me people who:
a. will agree with me
b. will agree on who the scapegoat is for when it fails
c. will not argue with me
d. we will call those people the "smartest" ones

Re:I think it is the opposite. (2)

Wycliffe (116160) | about 4 months ago | (#47620433)

Now find me people who:
a. will agree with me
b. will agree on who the scapegoat is for when it fails
c. will not argue with me
d. we will call those people the "smartest" ones

If you pick your "benchmark group" well enough and find people with similiar brainwaves/traits then this still solves their problem nicely.
You might not have actually picked the "smartest" people but you picked the people that are most likely to do what you want and
succeed where you want them to succeed so I don't see this as being a problem if you can really predict future performance.
It might actually be easier to detect "people who are good at following orders" than it is to detect "people who are smart"

Re:I think it is the opposite. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620481)

Or, You've picked the ones who know how to pick their battles...

Re:I think it is the opposite. (1)

khasim (1285) | about 4 months ago | (#47620517)

If you pick your "benchmark group" well enough and find people with similiar brainwaves/traits then this still solves their problem nicely.

Only if you redefine the "problem" to be "find people like these people".

And that's been solved for hundreds of years. Just look at the CxO's and Boards of Directors for the major corporations.

The problem is that these are the worst people for "national defense". Look at their track record.

You might not have actually picked the "smartest" people but you picked the people that are most likely to do what you want and succeed where you want them to succeed so I don't see this as being a problem if you can really predict future performance.

That is the problem. You cannot "predict future performance" because you're basing the selection criteria on other traits. Such as being born into X family or marrying into Y family.

It works only for as long as the families do not change and the economic/political situation does not change. See Marie Antoinette.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

houghi (78078) | about 4 months ago | (#47620431)

If you look at succesfull people in your company, you are not looking for 'smart' people in your company. There could be a hugfe difference.

The person who is interested more in family time than in company value might be (from some peoples point of view) the smart person. OK, he doesn't get the promotion and that is not what he wanted.

So you need to define what is 'smart'. And in many times the 'smartest' person wlll heavily depend on the situation. Many people are smart in one place but stupid in another.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (3, Funny)

lagomorpha2 (1376475) | about 4 months ago | (#47620443)

This test was devised decades ago.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S... [wikipedia.org]

Simply give any potential employees the option of a marshmallow now or waiting a period of time to receive two marshmallows. At the very least we should use this procedure to test our police force for poor impulse control.

It can even be applied to dating. On the first date I offer a marshmallow or if they have the willpower to not eat the marshmallow the promise of sex. So far it's managed to flawlessly protect me from a number of impulsive women.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

easyTree (1042254) | about 4 months ago | (#47620627)

Simply give any potential employees the option of a marshmallow now or waiting a period of time to receive two marshmallows. At the very least we should use this procedure to test our police force for poor impulse control.

I'd propose option (c), no marshmallows - at all; I really dislike marshmallows.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

lagomorpha2 (1376475) | about 4 months ago | (#47620739)

Sex it is then

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620457)

Case in point,

I went for an interview many years ago to see if I can get a programming job at some kind of bank. They made me take an IQ test, it was in three parts: shapes, ordered numbers, problems (two trains meeting each other). I scored quite bad at two of them, I scored 100% on the visual shapes test.

I generally score between 140 and 160 on IQ tests, I guess most IQ tests put more weight on the visual shape thingies.

They didn't want to hire me in fact they flat out said that it would not be possible for me to work at any financial company with these scores.

A few months later I was headhunted and hired by a proprietary trading firm, I still work there.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

easyTree (1042254) | about 4 months ago | (#47620637)

Indeed - one use of IQ tests - demoralize a section of society in to accepting whatever BS no-one else will accept.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 4 months ago | (#47620535)

Existing testing methods are already in place to offer scholarships, advanced maths, science places and are fully funded.
The new advanced brain scanner idea allows a new group to enjoy new fresh funding too.
You can wait for the right grant to show up or create the tech than induces new funding :)

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (1)

easyTree (1042254) | about 4 months ago | (#47620581)

hings like willpower, dedication, creativity, work ethic, etc... all play
into whether someone is successful at accomplishing tasks. I don't see how a brain scanner is going to
accomplish this or how it would be any better than existing testing methods

In the sense that they've not had a budget request for this type of project before and have demonstrated considerable creativity in coming up with this potentially-everlasting think-of-the-kids style project? Did I win?

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620621)

Something tells me that the solution to this problem may be to solve for the intersections of multidimensional isosurfaces.

Bear with me here. Imagine a biome chart [wikipedia.org] . Each biome is really the intersection of a range of multidimensional test scores (e.g. how well a biome-specific set of plant species thrives). Seen this way, you can now imagine a unique contour plot for each biome, and you can also imagine the contour plots of the individual plant species. Redefining the sets of species could alter the contour plot for a given biome, resulting in a different looking biome chart.

Now imagine the same thing with various scores for humans. We can't say that plant A is "better" than plant B; nor can we say that person C is "better" than person D. Each comparison depends on the environment / set of test scores being evaluated. Plant A might be "better" than B in environment X but B might be better in environment Y.

So my proposal is to apply a series of tests to the population and then compute multidimensional iso-surfaces. Think of these as map contours, except in a higher dimension. If you intersect two different sets of contours, you get a series of "regions" (for lack of a better term for the N-dimensional generalization of area, volume, etc). By construction, you know that each region is measurably "different" than each of its neighboring regions.

When designing the tests, it's important to remember the analogy to plants, and remember that evolution finds multiple paths to a given solution, and there can be divergent paths of success around a local minimum. Thus it's possible for the search space to contain holes where fitness score diverges around a hole and then merges again to keep climbing. A poorly designed test might accidentally exclude members of the group that took an unexpected path around a local minimum.

Re:What makes them think this is even possible? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621403)

You obscured an insightful point in a very badly written post. Why hide your light of reasoning under a bushel of poor composition?

What a strange test. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620123)

What a strange test.

The only way to pass is not to take it.

Re:What a strange test. (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#47620295)

Do you want to play a game?

Divide and conqure (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620153)

1) Identify the smart ones
2) "Eliminate" the smart ones
3) Sheeple are easier to control
4) Profit!

Re: (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620293)

Anyone smarter than the mediocre average of government intelligence that is not working within the government must be found, since they are a potential risk. Any potential risk should be eliminated or assimilated.

Mod parent up. (2)

SeaFox (739806) | about 4 months ago | (#47620357)

The only reason the government would want to know who the smartest people are is so they know who to add to their terror watch list (assuming they aren't part of The Party).

Re:Mod parent up. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620519)

I seem to remember the Nazi party a few years back working this same problem, come to think of it...

Uh oh, this isn't good (if it works) (2)

wisebabo (638845) | about 4 months ago | (#47620159)

This is a step along the road towards the Morlocks and Eloi of H. G. Wells "The Time Machine".

While this isn't as bad as "Gattaca" or "Brave New World" with their emphasis on eugenics; it's definitely not good for the concentration of wealth, power and yes, intelligence. When people can be ACCURATELY rated in terms of all their various intellectual abilities (as they already are in Chess ability) it will mean a further stratification of society and concentration of advantages.

While this has always being going on throughout history (and pre-history) if they really apply scientific techniques it could dramatically enhance its predictive power.

Maybe, eventually, humanity will start to diverge into multiple species. :(

Re:Uh oh, this isn't good (if it works) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620283)

What makes you think Humans of low-IQ can even be considered "people"? Granted, it's not a good idea to go around cleansing the sub-species of Human retards because they might have some useful traits, there is no guarantee the right people will control it to do such a thing, etc - but that doesn't mean evolution should come to a grinding halt just because we can keep the incompetents around and in the modern world of entitlements and subsidies it's important we have some mechanism that will keep people evolving in the right direction. Personally I'd be much less afraid of an H.G. Wells Morlock/Eloi world than I would be a Mike Judge 100% fucktard world - then again my great great great great great grandchildren would be the technologically advanced genetically augmented people so advanced they feast on the lower subspecies.

Re:Uh oh, this isn't good (if it works) (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620487)

What makes you think Humans of low-IQ can even be considered "people"?

Because NASCAR does.

Re:Uh oh, this isn't good (if it works) (1)

Coisiche (2000870) | about 4 months ago | (#47620931)

Well, not really. See, the elite are not actually going to use those tests on themselves or their offspring so there are always going to be incompetent cretins put in charge of things because being born into privilege is divorced from any natural ability. They're not interested in making themselves better, only richer.

What this is really about is that they need an easy way to identify skilled workers. There is not going to be any state education so they need to be able to identify potential candidates from within the uneducated 99% and if a machine can just scan someone then that's their ideal solution. Something that's easy to use and gives results that are easy to interpret, obviously.

The Best of the Best of the Best (1)

moxsam (917470) | about 4 months ago | (#47620185)

We are here because you are looking for the best of the best of the best, sir!

what makes me worried is (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620187)

If this would be used to determine if someone is smart enough to see though their BS and could perhaps be a problem in the future if they obtain enough power.

DHS Down And Out (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620221)

YeeeHaaaa.

DHS's contractor IS butt fucked ! Plus IPM Dead In The Water and flooding mid-ships.

This means that the newest and pending U.S. "Ambassadors" are BUTT FUCKED; i.e. No security clearances !

So, what will the Newest of the stale US AmbASSadors, the limp whinny, to ... Gulp ... Russia do in Moscow !

Not credit card ! Putin cut off Mastercard and Visa !

Still got to walk the OSHA line on "clock-in" "clock-out" rules, even in his Hotel room "State Department Suite" in Moscow.

Talk about a Prisoner of Zelda ... YeeeeeHaaaaa.

He can't even leave the Hotel to walk one block to the McDonald's to order a Big Mac with his bum credit card ... and NO
Rubles either !

YeeeeHaaaa !

relevant to national security? (2)

waddgodd (34934) | about 4 months ago | (#47620253)

Given the oxymoronic nature of "national intelligence", one can only wonder if they're looking for the smart people to put them on watchlists early.

Re:relevant to national security? (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 4 months ago | (#47620305)

Why limit their analysis to only the smart people?

Re:relevant to national security? (1)

marxmarv (30295) | about 4 months ago | (#47620391)

It's what they did with Tor, isn't it? Separate the sheep from the goats (i.e. those who have no interest in hiding anything vs. those who do) and watch the hell out of the sheep?

The sheep are more responsive to mass propaganda. There's no need to watch them until they prove themselves goats.

Re:relevant to national security? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620551)

> Given the oxymoronic nature of "national intelligence", one can only wonder if
> they're looking for the smart people to put them on watchlists early.

No, they want to make sure that they don't hire them by accident. [politicalblindspot.com]

Re:relevant to national security? (2)

AHuxley (892839) | about 4 months ago | (#47620597)

Re "...they're looking for the smart people to put them on watchlists early."
Smart people can be guided into good front companies that feel private sector but get 100% gov contracts.
Smart people can be guided away from eg open source crypto projects before they add large amounts of high quality code for free and tell the world.
Smart people can be guided to open source projects that create large amounts of quality GUI code, games, charity if they want to give "back" to projects.
Its more that a gov wants a feel for its top % of students and hopes they can be shaped into needed sectors of gov/mil work or just safe rewarding private sector work.
All you need is the right university advisor or job seeking options for that top few %. Add that nice car, settle down in a city with a few contracts, buy a home and that smart person is busy for decades.
The lists are more for smart people who may uncover the tools of the surveillance state or bypass the tools of the surveillance state.
The advanced OS, filesystems, crypto efforts are best left to teams with people who are 'turned' or not too questioning.

terrifying because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620263)

What makes you so sure that they want to hire you?

Idiots (1)

Chas (5144) | about 4 months ago | (#47620271)

That's assuming any of these morons actually have the faculties to understand actual intelligence and the factors that go into is measurement.

Otherwise, it'll wind up some stupid "if-then" matrix that tells you jack and shit about actual intelligence.

But all these dipshits will be dancing around going "I finded a smart goy! YAY ME!"

Doesn't mean what is measured won't be useful (1)

marxmarv (30295) | about 4 months ago | (#47620423)

to them. If they can detect the sort of brain activity that correlates with intelligence, certainly this can be expanded to other brain activity. Throw a Union Jack on their screens and see how they respond. Boom, state loyalty tester. Throw two naked guys on their screen, boom, sexual orientation test. Throw scenes of snipers shooting civilians, boom, black ops aptitude test.

The cover story, as usual, doesn't matter.

I know what they're looking for (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620405)

They want to make sure their people will not crack once they find out they're abusing everything this entire nation was/is built on.

This project is Snowden prevention.

Profilers? (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 4 months ago | (#47620451)

#27, lack of dates

The smartest ones? (3, Funny)

dohzer (867770) | about 4 months ago | (#47620489)

The smartest ones are those who don't reveal their true intelligence to the security agencies.

Are they sure they want this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620507)

Snowden was smarter than everyone around him. Just saying.

Smart doesn't matter, it's what you do with it (2)

dbIII (701233) | about 4 months ago | (#47620521)

Too many decent potential scientists and engineers are following the money and playing complicated accounting tricks on others similarly wasted in positions where they add no value to society.
Take a look at the Enron debacle for a well documented situation. Plenty of very intelligent hard working people were doing nothing but creating smokescreens for scams. Don't misunderstand or turn me into a strawman - accounts and finance people have an important role in society but highly creative ones building complicated artifices designed to mislead (or HFT people who do it via man in the middle attack) are a drain on society and a waste of potential talent. Pick just about anything else in society and they'd contribute better there.
So while it's very attractive for the bright to become tricksters and while the media portrays scientists and engineers in a very negative light we're only going to get the people who are driven or import people from other places where they don't mock scientists.

It's called... (1)

zawarski (1381571) | about 4 months ago | (#47620539)

...Postnatal-Eugenics

not spam (-1, Flamebait)

BlaiseCollinsonvum (3777607) | about 4 months ago | (#47620583)

My Uncle Matthew recently got a new cream Ford Shelby GT500 Coupe by working part-time off of a laptop... visit this website >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> WÃWÃW.JÃuÃmÃpÃÃ62.CÃoÃÃÃm

cognative ability what a laugh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620617)

I know some very "intelligent" people who do nothing but use their cognative resoning to justify the stupidist crap ever. Then I have met people of average inteilgence who have accomplished quite a lot. It seems drive is more valuable but those who have a natural gift could do well it they can avoid traps along the way. Ever meet a trader some of the smartest dumb people ever.

Other take (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620625)

Or, if you capture a group of hostiles, then instead of using "enhanced interrogation techniques" on them in far-off lands to find out who was the brains of the operation, you can use a non-evasive analysis to, well, you catch my drift.

Do you want to play a game? (1)

haiphonghponline (3777623) | about 4 months ago | (#47620661)

Do you want to play a game? :)

That's easy - brains of smart people taste better. (1)

mnemotronic (586021) | about 4 months ago | (#47620677)

And idiot brains taste terrible. Brains of politicians are unedible. More's the pity, but it does explain a lot.

Do you want Gattaca? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620685)

Because that's how you get Gattaca.

ACRONYM? (1)

Mr Z (6791) | about 4 months ago | (#47620769)

Acronyms Can Really be Obnoxious Names, You Mean?

Online gaming anyone ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620891)

What's the best way to test a group of peoples...

Statistically speaking.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47620989)

Whoever has the highest percentage of East Asian admixture..

Probably hoping to compete with (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | about 4 months ago | (#47621009)

these people [wikipedia.org] .

In other words: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621025)

If you cut through the pretty talk, they are looking for sociopathy indicators: people who are willing to disregard the costs of means necessary to achieve some ends, and particularly their own ends and the ends they are told to believe in. People who never ask themselves "can this be worth it?" or "isn't that self-defeating?". People without empathy or a conscience of their own. People fit to serve as KZ guards.

I think that, indeed, there are some neurophysiological indicators of primordial sociopathy. But a lot of sociopathy can be secured by group belief systems and dynamics.

So the search for the merciless indoctrinable übermensch is not really much of a necessity. In fact, the U.S. is doing pretty well working with their mostly European breeds.

the director doesn't want you to know.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621117)

They already got it. It's built into the militaries interferometers and they call it remote neural monitoring. They can tell anything they want about the persons brain. I think this is a cover story meant to lead up to throw off the public from being able to trace whether they already possess this technology or not. So people will reference this article and go, "nope, they just started development on it" like the 2008 articles on "synthetic telepathy" for a 30 year old technology.

Learn the truth here : click for patents, article, and whistleblower interviews [oregonstatehospital.net] .

Will the test include the environment in which (1)

mark_reh (2015546) | about 4 months ago | (#47621317)

this brain has to function? I mean specifically, does the test account for that brain being surrounded by and overseen by clueless administrators throwing obstacles in that brains path at every turn?

are they worried? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621339)

Sounds like they want to know who to fear. Or at least who they should target to get out of the gene pool

A shame no correlation between capability/capacity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47621425)

and laziness/addicting personality/insane/etc.

Wonder if CIA will now end up with potential Einsteins who just play video games all day (although probably play them REALLY well)?

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